Book 7 Chapter 26 - Forefinger

Lin Xi gave Xue Wantao a cold look. Then, without any hesitation, he turned around and rushed into the forest.

With each step, his left shoulder and chest brought him a feeling of pain that made him want to vomit and faint. The entire left side of his body was muddled from blood, becoming sticky and damp.

Ever since he began cultivating, he had never experienced such a serious injury. However, he didn’t use his ten minutes rewind ability because Xue Wantao’s cultivation level was at least above mid stage Soul Master level. Even if he did it all over again, knowing the other party’s movement trajectory, he might not necessarily be able to obtain a victory better than this one. Moreover, Lin Xi knew that his escape this time had only just begun, so he had to save this ability for facing an even more difficult situation.

That was why he could only forcefully endure it. He cut off a tree branch, biting down on it to prevent his teeth from clenching so hard they became loose.

After running at full speed for less than three halts, Lin Xi felt that his entire body already became a bit ice-cold. However, the inside of his body was like burning coals, his entire body already shaking uncontrollably. He knew that this was the result of losing too much blood, his stamina being overdrafted, it was easy for him to truly faint.

Many voices could vaguely be heard from the distance, but he didn’t become flustered in the slightest, only stopping his run, continuing to slowly walk into the forest depths. At the same time, he controlled his breathing, adjusting his own body’s blood and qi.

After calming down, he immediately sensed waves of heat swirling inside his body.

Lin Xi knew that this was the effect of soul force. What made him a bit happy was that as wisps of soul force were consumed within him, his body’s strength also began to recover bit by bit.

Suddenly, the originally tearing pain coming from the wound on his chest began to intertwine with a numb and itchy feeling. This made his heart go cold, thinking that the other party’s emerald green small sword was dipped in poison, so he immediately tore off his own clothes to take a look. However, what he discovered with pleasant surprise was that the blood seeping out of his badly mangled wound already became blood droplets, starting to clot.

The red droplets of blood didn’t have any off color or smell.

The numb itchy feeling only came from the area around the wound, even more wisps of soul force gathering towards the flesh surrounding this wound.

This wasn’t Xue Wantao having some poison on his blade, just the effects of ‘Glorious King Destroys Restraints’.

When he saw that even his wound’s bleeding was already staunched, Lin Xi felt more and more calm. He cut off all of the blood-soaked clothing on his body, wrapped them around a random rock, and then forcefully flung it towards a distant valley. Then, without even turning around, he ran in the opposite direction from where the stone was flung.

Among Yunqin’s troops and cultivators, there were definitely many experts at tracking. However, finding tracks would always take time, and Lin Xi himself wasn’t even familiar with this mountain range himself, not having an objective. As long as he didn’t stop, he should be able to increase the distance between these pursuers and himself.

He ran continuously for another few halts of time, feeling like his body began to release heat again. When he stopped to adjust his breathing again, the faint voices already completely disappeared. The faint sounds of running water could be heard once more.

When he confirmed that this wasn’t just some hallucination due to his weak situation, but rather really the sounds of running water, Lin Xi’s mind immediately shook.

Mountain streams were mostly drinkable, able to replenish a bit of his strength. Moreover, by moving along the stream, he could hide his traces, making it harder for his pursuers to find him.

He immediately headed in the stream’s direction.

Xue Wantao sat down on the mountain rocks, waiting.

He didn’t leave the area where he faced Lin Xi. Blood covered the earth and tree leaves in front of him; there was his blood, Lin Xi’s blood and his five severed fingers.

This world didn’t have any doctors who could reconnect fingers severed by soul weapons. That was why his left hand was destined to be left as a bare half palm.

Since every Yunqin soldier carried a first aid kit on them, right now, his left hand had already been wrapped in gauze, medicine had been applied over his chest, sealed with sheep intestine thread to stop the bleeding.

However, his injuries were still extremely serious.

Not only did Lin Xi’s blade stab his internal organs, it also sent ridicule and humiliation deep into his body.

He was waiting here until he could kill Lin Xi.

In his eyes, Lin Xi was only a weakling who would die from a single strike.

However, he was instead hacked into a cripple by Lin Xi’s blade.

The five fingers on the ground were like five small Lin Xis, continuously mocking him, laughing at him.

He was waiting, waiting until dew wet his temples, until the sky brightened.

A dark armored Yunqin general and two followers appeared in his line of sight, quickly walking up to him.

“Still haven’t found him?”

When he heard the Yunqin general’s first report, Xue Wantao said with a cold and expressionless voice, “How are you all even searching? When you all came, I clearly told you that with his injuries, there is no way he can get past a few li of distance. After so much time had passed, you all should have been able to turn over every single tree, every chunk of earth, yet right now, you are telling me that you still haven’t found him?”

The eyebrows of this stern faced Yunqin general whose face still didn’t show any sign of fatigue even after searching for an entire night jumped slightly, also giving Xue Wantao an expressionless look and saying, “This night, many impossible things have become possible.”

Xue Wantao raised his head, looking at this extremely stern faced Yunqin general who carried a type of natural pride, and then slowly lowered his head.

However, he then reached out his intact right hand, picked up a severed finger on the ground and then slowly placed it into his mouth.

Slowly and forcefully, he crushed his own finger under his teeth, and then swallowed.

The sounds of the finger bones being crushed, the grinding sounds of flesh and bone between his teeth became increasingly clear in this silent mountain forest, increasingly nauseating.

However, the Yunqin general and the two black-armored soldiers only calmly watched Xue Wantao do this, their faces a bit cold.

“There is no need for you to do this.” This Yunqin general said with a bit of mockery. “I have seen even more bloody things and have seen people much more fierce than you. Could it be that you think by doing this, you can make me feel frightened?”

Xue Wantao completely swallowed the crushed flesh and bones, and only then did he look at this Yunqin general, shake his head and say, “Even though I don’t know your background or identity, since you were transferred over to listen to my orders, then you are definitely the same as me, your life dedicated to the same person. I can obviously tell that you are a proud person, that is why judging from your expression and attitude, I already know that even though you weren’t able to find him, you should have already confirmed where he fled to.”

“As for me…” After a slight pause, Xue Wantao picked up the second finger in front of him. He slowly chewed it, swallowed it and then slowly said, “The reason why I lost to him was because of my inward fear… I do not fear death, but I couldn’t stop the fear of the blade entering my body, of seeing my fingers leave my hand. After sitting here bitterly for a night, I’ve finally overcome this fear. For this, I am actually grateful towards him.”

While watching Xue Wantao say this, watching blood trickle out from the corners of his lips, the stern faced Yunqin general finally felt a bit of a chill within.

He was a border army Cavalry General, after this, he would be transferred to a provincial army general head, his rank also rising to major fifth rank. That was why even though he was under Xue Wantao this time, when he saw Xue Wantao become seriously injured, seeing his left hand crippled, he was no longer all that respectful towards his bossiness. However, when he heard Xue Wantao’s words just now, he finally understood that Xue Wantao instead made some breakthroughs from this battle, feeling that the future Xue Wantao might become even more terrifying than he was before his hand was crippled.

While looking at this Xue Wantao who almost didn’t seem like a human, this Yunqin general’s eyes sunk. He didn’t say anything, instead having the attendants behind him open up a map.

He drew a circle on this map with his finger and then drew a line.

The circle was the mountain peak he and Xue Wantao were currently at, while that line was between two mountain peaks.

Then, he slowly said, “The peak we are on now is called Head Reed Peak, the next peak here is called Second Reed Peak. His traces stopped by a stream, so he definitely fled along this river. Moreover, he definitely ran for an entire night without rest, or else he would have already been caught by our men. Right now, the troops stationed outside and the other cultivators have already sealed up the mountain, completely sealing up our Head Reed Peak, so at this time, he should be somewhere between Head Reed Peak and Second Reed Peak. However, there is a valley between the two peaks that stretches several dozen zhang in width, the stream below the source of the provincial capital’s Bridge Edge River. That ravine is high to the point where even a State Knight will fall to their death, so there is no way he can climb past. The only possibility is that he moves along this ravine, making his way around.”

“Even if I consider him a cultivator who isn’t seriously injured… even so, with his current stamina, he should only be in this region.” This Yunqin general reached out his hand, pointing towards the center of the dark line, giving Xue Wantao a look, explaining this.

Xue Wantao began to slowly chew on the third finger. At this time, the sky already brightened, the glimmers of dawn shining on his face. After only a night’s time, he already seemed to have become a completely different person, becoming like a corpse eating demon.

He looked at that black line, a hint of a cruel smile appearing on his face. “He should be able to tell that this mountain peak has already been sealed, and that those below will slowly start searching the mountain, so he will head deeper into the mountain in search of places to hide or break free… so all we need to do is head to the top of this black line and wait for him?”

“Nothing is definite.” The Yunqin general gave Xue Wantao a look, frowning as he looked at the distance of this straight line. “But this should be the rough situation. If he wants to evade some pursuing soldiers, if we head out, we should be a bit faster than him.”

Previous Chapter Next Chapter